Archives by Month - July 2012

OddBall Screenshot Saturday #13

11:08 AM July 28, 2012
Today is Screenshot Saturday number thirteen! This week I've completed the anvil model and texture, and updated some GUI elements to reflect that. When an Oddball transforms into an anvil it drops down swiftly and has the ability to depress buttons in levels. You can see 2 of the Oddballs transformed and depressing buttons in this image.

I'm now working on the model and texture for the umbrella powerup. After that I will be adding in some new wall textures and then it's back to finishing more levels for the game :)

OddBall #screenshotsaturday #13

OddBall Screenshot Saturday #12

4:27 PM July 22, 2012
Screenshot Saturday number twelve is up! This is a closer shot than usual and it displays the new cannon model and texture I've been working on.

This shot also gives you a closer look at the red OddBall's eyes which are a bit clueless looking as he's getting launched out of the cannon. I'll be tweaking the cannon's look this week and hopefully finishing up some of the other graphics as I work into next week's screenshot :)

OddBall #screenshotsaturday #12

OddBall Screenshot Saturday #11

11:27 AM July 14, 2012
Here is Screenshot Saturday number eleven! This week I've been continuing to update the OddBall eyes (including art, animation and code) and also the in-game GUI elements. In today's screenshot you will see each OddBall has a bit more personality with their own set of animated eyes, and you will also see updated buttons along the bottom that are now improved.

Last week I mentioned some of the feedback I received from Jacob Schwartz, and this week I've worked on some more changes related to that. Jacob mentioned that Apple has published information on the ideal minimum size for on screen buttons so that they don't seem too small for the average user. This size is 44 pixels by 44 pixels. At the time, my GUI buttons along the bottom were only 36 pixels in size because I was trying to maximize the screen space for the game area. However, I realized that this was pretty cramped and not ideal for users trying to press those buttons. With Jacob's advice, I've now updated those buttons to be 44 pixels in size. At the same time, I updated their graphics to be a bit cleaner and also to include the newly added OddBall eyes that I've added.

Thanks to these changes and the other work I've been adding to the game lately, it has a lot more character. I am now continuing down my list of models and textures that need completing including the cannon, inner walls, umbrella, and anvil. Afterwards I will be making more levels to complete the 80 or so I plan to have in the game's initial release. :)

OddBall #screenshotsaturday #11

OddBall Screenshot Saturday #10

10:21 AM July 7, 2012
I'm at Screenshot Saturday number ten already! This week I've been concentrating a bit more on graphics. I finished the fan model and also textured and animated it. I updated the GUI ball buttons a bit, and I created the "GO" button texture that is used to fire the Oddballs into levels. I also started modelling the cannon but that is still a work in progress.

However, the biggest new change I've started working on is the OddBall eyes. Way back in my original design I had planned to give the Oddballs some eyes that convey emotion as they are launched throughout levels (such as glee when first launched, pain when they hit a wall, etc). This was originally planned as a way to give the game a bit more character. However, I later scratched the idea because of a few reasons. For one, I felt my overall semi-realistic theme didn't have room for cartoony character eyes on the Oddballs. But I also wanted to simplify the game so that I could actually finish and release it, which meant cutting some unnecessary features.

Flash forward to last week and I received some great new feedback on my game. I've been attending my local indie game meetups for the past several months. These are weekly meetings where fellow indie game developers in Victoria gather to have a few beers at the pub, talk about the industry, about games, and about our projects. It's a great way to get feedback, to learn, to meet similarly minded folks, and to build a fun community around our passion. Any how, a fellow iPhone developer Jacob Schwartz (who has released a few iPhone games to date) was kind enough to offer some good advice on my current Oddball build.

As with any feedback, you need to take it with a grain of salt. I don't want to get over my head and start adding and changing everything about my game, but I also welcome constructive advice. One of Jacob's suggestions was to make the Oddballs (which are really the main characters of my game) more relatable to the player. Adding eyes to the balls (which was part of my original design) was actually his main suggestion. So I took his advice and thought about it some more. I've come to the conclusion that this is actually an important feature that should never have been cut from my game. So I'm now working on an animated eyeball system within Oddball. The simple tests I've done so far greatly add to the character of the game and give the game more juiciness overall. I thank Jacob for setting me back on the right path with that :).

This week I'll be working on animating the eyeballs and coding the system for these animations. I intend to give each of the 3 Oddballs it's own style (one will be a female, one will be a tough guy, and another will be more of a generic average style). And then of course there will be sound effects and voices for each :)

OddBall #screenshotsaturday #10